Research articles

Institutionalisation of knowledge transfer on sexual behaviour in the times of AIDS: a case study from a village community in north-central Namibia

Published in: African Journal of AIDS Research
Volume 13, issue 3, 2014 , pages: 247–260
DOI: 10.2989/16085906.2014.952649
Author(s): Mari KervinenUniversity of Eastern Finland, Finland


This paper concentrates on the changes in knowledge transfer in northern Namibia with respect to sexual norms, behavioural advice and sexual health information. The research was conducted in a small village community in Ohangwena region, where over 100 semi-structured and structured interviews were held with a sample of 67 community members and 50 professionals dealing with HIV/AIDS issues. The results of the research indicate the change in social roles in family and community dynamics, especially between generations, and thus a change in trust, respect and responsibility attached to information sharing. This further exerts pressure on the classification, choice, adaptation and transmission of information at both the individual and family level. Secondly, and partly as a consequence of this, the levels of indigenous, community level information from elders to youth and the level of institutionalised information sharing leave space for variations in behavioural norms. The research contributes to the discussion on problems in information sharing, knowledge transfer and adaptation of behavioural advice in HIV/ AIDS work.

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